Letter | Published:

The Beginnings of Porcelain in China

Nature volume 100, pages 304305 (20 December 1917) | Download Citation



IN the review of our publication by Dr. J. W. Mellor (NATURE, October 4, p. 88) there is a misunderstanding which we feel should not be allowed to pass in the interest of your readers. Dr. Mellor states that we regard the so-called Han pottery as porcelanous, and as the forerunner of true porcelain. Such a statement has never been made; we always held, and still hold, that Han pottery is nothing but a common stoneware. The pottery newly discovered in Shensi, and forming the subject of our investigation, is a distinct group, which, as maintained repeatedly, was not turned out under the Han, but long afterwards, at the end of the third century A.D. In its form and design it is a direct descendant of Han pottery, but its glaze, as proved by analysis, is porcelanous. For this reason it has been styled “Han porcelanous pottery.”

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  1. Field Museum, Chicago, November 8.

    • B. LAUFER
    •  & H. W. NICHOLS


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